Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wisconsin State AFL-CIO Invitation to Join Them In La Crosse on Thursday

Join us tomorrow in La Crosse. State Rep. Steve Doyle and County Board Chair Tara Johnson will join local retirees, nursing aides, and families of the disabled to discuss choices facing Congress that could threaten vital services and the economy. Can we count on you to be there?

It is time for the wealthiest Americans and big corporations start paying their fair share - now's not the time to cut critical programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

Families living paycheck to paycheck and all Americans working hard to make a better life for themselves won this election. By electing Tammy Baldwin to the U.S. Senate and re-electing President Barack Obama, Wisconsinites rejected a rigged system that only works for the wealthiest few and chose an economy that works for everyone.

Join us for tomorrow's 1 p.m. news conference in the lobby of the County Administrative Center,
400 N. Fourth St. In Wisconsin, Medicare provides health insurance for over 950,000 seniors - and Medicaid pays for more than two out of three nursing home residents are paid for by Medicaid. Funding for these critical programs is at risk in the lame duck budget session starting next Tuesday.

In Solidarity,

Phil Neuenfeldt, President
Stephanie Bloomingdale, Secretary-Treasurer

A reprieve for Wisconsin labor? |

WISCONSIN'S PUBLIC-sector workers may escape the brunt of Republican Gov. Scott Walker's anti-union laws, thanks to a September court ruling. But with Walker and anti-union forces set to appeal the ruling, unions that represent government workers are still at risk of losing their right to collective bargaining. …. In the meantime, some public-sector unions took concessionary contracts before Act 10 came into effect. Madison-area unions, including AFSCME Local 60 and MTI, seized the opportunity to negotiate contract extensions without Walker's restrictions on collective bargaining.

SPECIAL NOTE: Exit polling in Wisconsin unfortunately still showed that 33% of households reporting that at least one voting member in union household's voted for republicans. This still remains puzzling to a majority of "Union" households that have experienced the fallout from legislative actions like Wisconsin ACT 10. Whether these union households that voted republican were the reason Wisconsin delivered the presidency to President Obama, but returned "absolute" majority control of Wisconsin State Government to republicans, again, remains unknown. However, it certainly had to help the republicans to regain absolute majority control. What remains really scary for Wisconsin union households, or at least 66% of union households is how Governor Scott Walker and GOP legislative leadership interpret the Wisconsin vote. If they interpret the Wisconsin vote as a "mandate" to continue their legislative assault on "union" workers, then does that mean they initiate their anti-collective bargaining attack on "private" union workers? One thing will be certain in Wisconsin, if they do, it is likely they failed to recognize the wrath and pushback they received when they attecked the public-sector union workers.

A reprieve for Wisconsin labor? |

Statement of AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders on the 2012 Election

“We are proud of the role AFSCME members and our sisters and brothers in the labor movement have played in this critical victory. More workers than ever got involved through the AFL-CIO’s political program, the smartest, biggest and broadest effort we’ve ever run. More than 65,000 AFSCME volunteers went into action, combining cutting-edge voter communications with massive grassroots strength." --- Lee Saunders, AFSCME International President

Statement of AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders on the 2012 Election

Election 2012 - WISCONSIN Election Results - CBS News

Follow the below link for the "Top of the Ticket" Election results for WISCONSIN:

Election 2012 - Wisconsin Election Results - CBS News

AFSCME | Obama Re-Elected to the White House

They did it. … Across the country, 65,600 public service workers who are members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO pulled together with family, coworkers, neighbors and community allies to ensure victory in Election 2012 for Pres. Barack Obama and candidates who will support America’s working families in Congress and state and local offices …… “This is a good day for the middle class, the Main Street movement and the American Dream,” AFSCME Pres. Lee Saunders said. “The American people sent a clear message that we will stand with a President who stands with all Americans. From the White House to the statehouses, we pulled together to elect leaders who believe that we are all in this together.”

AFSCME | Obama Re-Elected to the White House

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Still Waiting To Vote?

AFSCME ALERT: If you are in line to vote when the polls close, they HAVE to let you vote. Call 866-687-8683 to report voting problems.

Sent from my U.S. Cellular BlackBerry® smartphone

Monday, November 5, 2012

AFSCME Wisconsin: Complete Your Ballot

Thank you for all you have done to get our state and our nation moving forward again.

We know how hard you’ve been working – ever since the day Gov. Scott Walker “dropped the bomb” on public service workers.

We fought back hard, and you can be proud of what we’ve accomplished.

We can take another step forward tomorrow, by making sure that we elect worker-friendly candidates from top to bottom of the ballot.

Some polls are starting to predict that President Obama will be re-elected. 

In this time of saturation advertising and voter suppression tactics, we can take nothing for granted.

Please make sure to get to the polls tomorrow, and make sure your family, your friends and your co-workers get there between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.

And while you’re casting your vote for president, make sure to mark your ballot for Tammy Baldwin. She is a true friend and will be a great champion for working people in the U.S. Senate.

And click here to see recommendations from your fellow AFSCME members for state and local races.

Through hard fought recall elections, we took back our State Senate from Walker’s rubber stampers. 

We need to hold on to the worker-friendly majority we won in the Senate.

And we need to send a message by making serious gains in the State Assembly.

The stakes are high in tomorrow’s election.

Will we continue to see Tea Party zealots slash services while serving up tax breaks for the rich?

Or will we elect leaders who believe our best days are before us and are willing to invest in a brighter vision for America?

The choice is yours. Please get out and vote tomorrow, and support worker friendly candidates for every office on your ballot.

In solidarity,

Jim Garity, President
AFSCME Council 40

Paulette Feld, President
AFSCME Council 24

Brian Stafford, President
AFSCME Council 48
Rick Badger, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 40

Marty Beil, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 24

Rich Abelson, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 48

PS. If you have two hours that you can help with the final day of the campaign, click here to volunteer.  This will be a close race and every thing you can do will help.

Paid for by Wisconsin Legislative Council 11, American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO, Not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.

AFSCME Council 24 Provides More Action and Advocacy

The arbitration results outlined below represent continued activity and advocacy by the Locals and Council 24 on behalf of our members.  Special thanks to Katy Krumm, Local 122, for her synopsis and comments:

Arbitration Results from 10/12/12
Stanley Correctional Institution 

Case #1
An employee received a 1 day suspension for allegedly violating ED #50. The employee had sent out a group email asking which staff members were interested in participating in a benefit for a former co-worker who had died and had pictures from a Green Bay Packers game that the employee attended which were being used as a screen saver. The union presented evidence that management , all the way up to Warden Wallace from CVCTF send out similar emails multiple times per year and that personal pictures are allowed if they are being used a screen saver. The union also argued that the 1 day suspension was not just because it was not progressive discipline. The arbitrator affirmed the union’s arguments and reduced the 1 day suspension to a letter of reprimand. The letter of reprimand may now be removed from the employees file on the 12 month anniversary of the date of the incident.

Case #2
An employee working a 7-3 shift was ordered for 2nd shift overtime at 1300. Management at SCI forced another 1st shift sergeant for the same position from 1400-1500 until the 7-3 sergeant finished their original shift and was available to work the ordered position. The union argued that the 7-3 sergeant was not eligible to be forced for overtime that occurred before the start of 2nd shift because they were not eligible to sign-up and accept the overtime. A staff member may not accept or be forced for overtime that conflicts with their regularly scheduled shift. An SCI Captain went as far as to present untruthful statements to the arbitrator, claiming that he had ordered Sgt. Rose in the past in the same manner that this Sergeant was ordered. Those statements were proven false. The arbitrator affirmed the union’s position and awarded the grievant comp. time for the incident.
Case #3
An employee was forced for 3rd shift overtime out of seniority order. An officer junior to the grievant left the institution without checking in with supervisors. SCI management stated that they would not affirm the grievance when it was originally filed because then they would have to write up the employee that left without checking in and didn’t want to do that, because then the union would grieve that discipline also. The union presented evidence that the employee was not the junior officer on shift and since he was forced at 2145 the need for overtime was known in plenty of time to notify the junior officer on shift. The arbitrator affirmed the union’s position and comp. time was awarded to the grievant.
Case #4
An employee was demoted without just cause. The union presented evidence that of the 3 staff involved only the grievant was disciplined. The union also presented evidence that the discipline was extremely excessive and not progressive. Management spent 4 hours attempting to sway the arbitrator with misinformation that was not relevant the grievance which was being heard. The arbitrator affirmed the union’s position and restored the grievant to the rank of Sergeant.
Case #5
An employee received a 1 day suspension for an incident that occurred 3 days from a similar incident. The union argued that the employer should have combined the two incidents since they happened 3 days apart and had the same mitigating circumstances. The arbitrator sided with management and upheld the discipline.
Case #6
An employee was denied 230.36 benefits. The union argued that the employee did everything correctly and should be made whole. Management argued that the employee should have re-submitted the forms several months after the incident when the employee was off work. The arbitrator sided with management and upheld the denial of benefits.


Following commentary provided by AFSCME Council 24 Local 122 President Katy Krumm;

The golden question I get asked day in and day out is, “What can the union do for me?” All of the people involved in the cases above have been career-long union members. They know the Golden Question isn’t ,“What can my union do for me?” It is, “What would happen to me without my union?” Without the support that comes from being in a union, management would have had free reign to discipline these members anyway they saw fit, but the union was there to hold them accountable for their actions and see that everyone was given a fair shake. Being part of a union means that no one has to stand alone. We are all in this together and by standing together we can effect a change in our workplace, whether management wants to admit or not. We are the majority, we have the voice, and that voice is the power as long as we stand by each other.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

More details emerge about Obama's Monday rally in Madison

Wisconsin State Journal releases more details regarding President Obama's visit to Madison on Monday, November 5th.

More details emerge about Obama's Monday rally in Madison

Danny DeVito Joining Canvassers in La Crosse on Sunday

Danny De Vito will be here Sunday, Nov. 4, at 2:00 p.m. in room 340 of Cartwright Center at UW-L.  Again, we want canvassers.  The cast of "It's Always Sunny" will be with Danny.     

Please use the following link to volunteer or RSVP for events. 

Bruce Springsteen and oh yes, President Barack Obama in Madison on Monday

President Barack Obama knows just how much Wisconsin matters.  That’s why he’s coming to Madison on Monday morning on the eve of this critical election.

He knows we can stop the Romney/Ryan attack on our values right here, right now.

He knows we can elect Tammy Baldwin, sending a true champion for the working people to the U.S. Senate.

The President will be in Madison on Monday morning to boost our momentum.  Tammy Baldwin will join him on stage.  And if that’s not enough star power for you, Bruce Springsteen will be on hand to play a few favorites.

The event is free, but you must have a ticket to get in.  Click here to RSVP for your ticket.

The president also needs your help in cutting through the campaign commercial clutter by joining us a couple hours over the next 4 days to talk to neighbors to ensure they vote for our worker friendly candidates.  Click here to show President Obama and Tammy Baldwin that AFSCME stands with them against the right-wing attack on working people.“

We are on the verge of turning the tide -- for the nation, and for the future of our own state.

Be part of history.  Come out and see the president on Monday. 

And sign up here to make history as we fight to get our state and nation moving forward again.

In solidarity,

Jim Garity, President
AFSCME Council 40

Paulette Feld, President
AFSCME Council 24
Rick Badger, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 40

Marty Beil, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 24

PS. Don't wake up Wednesday morning wishing you had done more.  Click here to make a difference.

This is a Wisconsin statutue 11.29 communication to members and subscribers.  Paid for by AFSCME Council 11 and Wisconsin PEOPLE Conference PAC, Doug Burnett, Treasurer. Not authorized by any candidate, candidate's agent or committee.

Friday, November 2, 2012

From DOA Regarding President Obama's Visit on Monday

Wisconsin Department of

November 2, 2012

Good afternoon,

President Barack Obama will be speaking in Madison on Monday, November 5. The event is planned downtown on Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard from between 10-11 a.m. outside the City/County Building and the Madison Municipal Building (where the post office is located).

This email includes details about operations of State office buildings and parking in the downtown area. This information is current as of early afternoon on Friday. Please check the Department of Administration (DOA) website at regularly throughout the weekend and Monday morning because this information is subject to change.

State Office Buildings
State office buildings will remain open. We recognize this event will cause delays in arriving to work, additional security and large crowds. Employees who do not work in State office buildings downtown may wish to avoid the area unless you are attending the event. If you have a meeting scheduled downtown on Monday, it should be rescheduled or cancelled because buildings will have limited access.

Security in the area will be increased starting on Sunday, November 4. The following streets and areas will be closed from Sunday morning at 11 a.m. to Monday afternoon, which will impact your commute to work, so please plan accordingly:

·         Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard
·         Doty Street
·         Wilson Street
·         Main Street
·         Capitol Square

At the recommendation of law enforcement, all State employees should wear their State ID until the conclusion of the visit.

Below is more information for specific State buildings downtown: 
DOA Building - 101 East Wilson Street
·       SAFETY: all blinds must be closed and staff must stay away from windows on Monday. Security will be watching the area closely and you must follow this safety precaution to avoid any safety risk to you and your colleagues.
·       Currently, the front entrances of the building and parking below the building will be available.
·       Please check the DOA website at throughout the weekend and Monday morning for any updated information.

DHS Building - 1 West Wilson
·       SAFETY: staff must stay away from windows on Monday. Security will be watching the area closely and you must follow this safety precaution to avoid any safety risk to you and your colleagues.
·       Employees may enter in the back of the building at the 2B entrance.
·       All front entrances of the building will be closed to employees and the general public. Therefore, the public will also not have the ability to obtain vital records during this timeframe on Monday.

·       If you have a parking space in the Monona Terrace parking ramp, you may access your spot from the John Nolen Drive entrance only.
·      DHS employees should check their employee hotline 1-866-848-5112 and the DHS website for the most current information about Monday’s event. 
State Capitol
·         SAFETY: all blinds must be closed and staff must stay away from windows on Monday. Security will be watching the area closely and you must follow this safety precaution to avoid any safety risk to you and your colleagues.
·         The Capitol Square will be closed starting on Sunday, November 5.

·         The Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard entrance to the Capitol will be closed.
·         If you have a parking space in the GEF1 or GEF2 building, you will be able to access your parking spot.
Risser Justice Center & Law Library – Main Street and MLK Jr. Boulevard

·       SAFETY: all blinds must be closed and staff must stay away from windows on Monday. Security will be watching the area closely and you must follow this safety precaution to avoid any safety risk to you and your colleagues.

·       Employees must enter the building from the Main Street entrance for the ramp.
·      You may still park in the parking ramp, but you will not be able to leave until after the event is over and security has cleared the area.
Attending the Event
Employees who wish to attend should ensure this is done on their own time and that they have obtained supervisory approval. 
Thank you for your patience. We realize this poses some challenges with the short notice, but we appreciate your understanding. Again, please check the DOA website at for any updates throughout the weekend and Monday. We will post any additional information or changes on that website. 
Thank you,

Michael Huebsch

Obama rally Monday will be on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard

President Barack Obama's Election Day eve campaign rally in Madison will be held on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in front of the City County Building on Monday morning, local authorities told some office workers in the area on Friday.
Obama rally Monday will be on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard

Election Night Party for the La Crosse Area

We have received the following information regarding plans for an Election Night Party in La Crosse:


Don't miss celebrating with other Democrats on Tuesday after the polls close at 8 p.m.  DOORS WILL OPEN AT 8 P.M.

Place:  Radisson Hotel Ballroom
Time:   8:00 p.m. until 1 a.m. 

Source: La Crosse County Democratic Party

Application Process | Emerge Wisconsin

AFSCME Council 24 is a proud supporter of Emerge Wisconsin and we encourage AFSCME Women to make a difference in future elections through the education and assistance of Emerge Wisconsin. If you have thought of running for an elected office, but did not know where to start or how to be effective in running for office, then this is the place to start.

Deadline for applying for the 2013 Emerge Wisconsin Class is Wednesday, November 14th, 2012.

P.S. Make sure you take advantage of Wisconsin's EARLY VOTE that ends today or ensure that you cast your votes on Tuesday, November 6th.

Application Process | Emerge Wisconsin

Join in our GOTV efforts!

It’s crunch time!  Let’s get out the vote for working families this weekend.  Stop by one of our volunteer locations listed below, grab a walk packet or a phone, and get to work contacting voters. 

Let’s mobilize and turn out the vote for Barack Obama, Tammy Baldwin and our local labor endorsed candidates.

Our ground game will make the difference on Election Day -- this Tuesday, November 6.  See you on the doors brothers and sisters!

In Solidarity,

Phil Neuenfeldt, President
Stephanie Bloomingdale, Secretary-Treasurer
Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington & Ozaukee County
Canvassing Office: Milwaukee Area Labor Council: 633 S. Hawley Road, Milwaukee, WI 53214
Contact: Jocelyn Woodards - 414-520-0344;
Phone Bank Office: Wisconsin State AFL-CIO: 6333 W. Bluemound Road, Milwaukee, WI 53213
Contact: Chris Czubkowski - 414-573-2170

Racine, Kenosha, Walworth & Rock County
Canvassing Office: Racine Labor Temple: 1840 Sycamore Avenue, Racine, WI 53406
Contact: Justin Geiger - 414-745-4177;
Canvassing Office: UAW Local 72: 3615 Washington Road, Kenosha, WI 53144
Contact: Carol Edelson - 202-320-1410;
Canvassing Office: Janesville Labor Temple: 1605 Center Avenue, Janesville, WI 53546
Contact: John Grier - 570-540-0836;

Dane, Dodge, Jefferson, Green, Columbia, Richland, Sauk, Grant, Iowa, & Lafeyette County
Canvassing Office & Phone Bank: Madison Labor Temple: 1602 S. Park Street, Madison, WI 53715 Contact: Greg Neil - 608-556-9521;
Canvassing Office: 258 Barstow Street, Horicon, WI 53032
Contact: Melissa Austin - 608-347-5320;

Eau Claire, Chippewa, Clark, Barron, Polk, St. Croix, Dunn, Pierce, Pepin, Buffalo, Trempeleau, Jackson, La Crosse, Monroe, Vernon & Crawford County
Canvassing Office: Eau Claire Labor Temple: 2233 Birch Street, Eau Claire, WI 54703
Contact: Andy Thompson - 715-831-3353;
Canvassing Office: IAMAW District 66: 1307 Market Street, La Crosse, WI 54601
Contact: Gregory Fries - 631-896-9249;

Marathon, Wood, Portage, Juneau, Adams, Marquette, Waushara, Waupaca, Shawano, Menominee, Taylor, Lincoln, Langlade, Oneida, Forest, Vilas & Florence County
Canvassing Office: Wausau Labor Temple: 318 S. 3rd Avenue, Wausau, WI 54401
Contact: Scott Wright - 920-450-2121;
Canvassing Office: Laborers Hall: 220 Johnson Street, Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54495
Contact: Scott Wright - 920-450-2121;

Brown, Kewaunee, Door, Manitowoc, Sheboygan, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Winnebago, Outagamie, Oconto, Marinette & Calumet County
Canvassing Office: Teamsters Local 662, 1546 Main Street, Green Bay, WI 54302
Contact: Meredith Place - 202-425-2791;
Canvassing Office: USW District 2: 1244A Midway Road, Menasha, WI 54952
Contact: Meredith Place - 202-425-2791;
Canvassing Office: Fond du Lac Labor: 50 E. Bank Street, Fond du Lac, WI 54935
Contact: Greg Hinds - 920-540-2309;
Canvassing Office: Winnebago Labor Temple: 2211 Oregon St. #A3, Oshkosh, WI
Contact: Greg Hinds - 920-540-2309;

Douglas, Bayfield & Ashland Counties
Canvass Office & Phone Bank: ILA Local 1037 Union Hall; 424 Tower Avenue, Superior, WI 54880 Contact: Judy Hack - 218-391-6116

Union Members Rally for President Obama

Hundreds of union members and activists held a rally Thursday afternoon in Green Bay to re-elect President Barack Obama. They see the election as a chance to save the power of unions. With the failed recall of Governor Walker and most Senate Republicans, and the survival of Act 10 - - the collective bargaining law -- which is now tied up in courts, unions have had a rough year. "It's been a little tough," Mark Cherney of United Steelworkers International acknowledged. "Hopefully it'll be a little better Tuesday." Union workers rallied as the AFL-CIO endorsed candidates and campaigned for President Obama, saying his re-election would mean big gains for unions.

Union Members Rally for President Obama

Election Protection Smartphone App | General Pages | Election Protection

We need to ensure that you know your voting rights. With the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board currently conducting an investigation into allegations that the Romney-Ryan Campaign has published illegal training materials for their poll watchers in Wisconsin, we do not know what to expect from these poll watchers who will seek to disguise their support of the Romney-Ryan Presidential Ticket and possibly discourage voters who they view as supporters of the Obama-Biden Presidential Ticket from voting. For those of you with smartphones, a cool APP has been created to provide all the protection you will need in the palm of your hand. Follow the below link and check it out.

Election Protection Smartphone App

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Political payback? Nino Amato says Walker administration wants aging coalition muffled

An example of Governor Scott Walker's, YOU DO IT MY WAY OR ELSE...

For more than 35 years, the Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups has advocated on behalf of the state's elderly, disabled and their families. … But the coalition and its current firebrand executive director, Nino Amato, now claim they're under siege from top officials in the Walker administration for sharply opposing the governor on several key issues, including Medicare reform and President Obama's Affordable Care Act. … State officials deny any vendetta against the coalition and say there are no irregularities in how funds have been disbursed for the various aging programs in the state.  … But a series of documents, emails and letters suggest DHS employees, including chief legal counsel Mary Spear, worked behind the scenes to discredit the coalition and steer funds to a different aging group that falls more directly under control of the state.

Political payback? Nino Amato says Walker administration wants aging coalition muffled

Should Act 10 Be Repealed? Assembly Candidates Divided

The state's sweeping collective bargaining reforms — still being litigated in court — drew widely divergent views from area candidates seeking election to the state Assembly. Asked whether, if elected, they would try to repeal Act 10 which eliminated most public sector union negotiations, reactions fell along partisan lines at a candidates forum held Tuesday in Brookfield.

Should Act 10 Be Repealed? Assembly Candidates Divided

Saunders Fights for the Common Man

The last several weeks have been especially busy for Lee Saunders but the union leader would have it no other way. He relishes a fight, particularly when it falls within the purview of labor and he sees this year's presidential contest as the perfect example of the stark choices Americans face. Saunders, the first African-American president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees [AFSCME] has spent large chunks of time over the last few months on the stomp in swing states for the Obama administration. …. Saunders said he planned to be actively campaigning in swing states until Nov. 6. He said he expected 80,000 union activists and staff to work tirelessly to re-elect Obama.

Saunders Fights for the Common Man

Who Would a Move to a Flat Tax Benefit?

Source: The Wisconsin Budget Project
by John Peacock

Should Wisconsin make changes to its income tax structure that would cut income taxes for big earners and raise taxes on those least able to afford it?

That's the path some legislators believe Wisconsin should follow...

Legislators have laid out their priorities for the next legislative session, which begins in January 2013, and changes to the individual income tax rank high on some legislators' lists. Rep. Robin Vos has said he will work towards making the income tax "flatter" -- an action that, depending on how it is carried out, could cut taxes for big earners and raise taxes for everybody else.

Another possible consequence of big changes to our income tax structure could be the loss of revenue the state needs to make investments in schools and health care -- the kind of investments that are important for insuring that Wisconsin has a healthy, well-educated workforce.

The potential loss of resources is especially concerning Wisconsin already has more than a billion dollars of phased-in tax cuts that are scheduled to be implemented over the next five years.

Given the substantial price tag of the tax cuts are coming due in the next few years, the state should proceed with caution in implementing new tax breaks, especially for the best off. Visit the Wisconsin Budget Project's newly-redesigned blog to learn more about how changes to our state's income tax structure could have a negative effect on Wisconsin.

Six Steps to Protect Your Vote

Useful information to protect your vote if you are intending to EARLY VOTE or vote at the polls on November 6th

Six Steps to Protect Your Vote

Lunch with the President on Friday

From the day Scott Walker “dropped the bomb” on us, Lee Saunders has been there for us, first as AFSCME International Secretary-Treasurer, and now as International President.

Saunders has stood with us through snowstorms, he’s sweated with us through summer recalls, and now he is coming back to help us as we head in to the final days of the election this year.

Join Pres. Saunders for a discussion about the Nov 6th election at Argus Bar & Grille just off the Capitol Square.

AFSCME International President Lee Saunders will be in Madison on Friday Nov 2nd for a special lunch reception for AFSCME activists like you. Food will be provided. He’ll give us his nationwide perspective, and talk with us about our prospects and challenges in Wisconsin.

Friday,  Nov 2nd, 2012
Noon - 1pm
Argus Bar and Grille
123 E Main St (corner of S Webster St & E Main St)

RSVP here to attend this special event for AFSCME members. Food will be provided.  There is limited space available, so sign up quick.

In solidarity,

Jim Garity, President
AFSCME Council 40

Paulette Feld, President
AFSCME Council 24
Rick Badger, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 40

Marty Beil, Executive Director
AFSCME Council 24

PS. If you can't make the event, be sure to sign up to help us in the final few days of the campaign.  Click here to volunteer.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Lawmakers settle open records lawsuit

Republican Wisconsin Lawmakers failed to comply with "Open Records" requests and have agreed to settle lawsuits filed by the records requester.

Republicans seem to display this constant practice of choosing which laws apply to them and which laws they will ignore.

These continued practices by Republicans need to be remembered when you cast your vote on Tuesday, November 6th...

Lawmakers settle open records lawsuit

Teachers unions talk merger after membership drops 30 percent

Two major Unions representing teachers in Wisconsin have both recently voted at their respective conventions to engage in talks over a possible merger.

At a time when Unions need their membership numbers to remain strong, in order to change the present course of anti-worker political candidates and the present Wisconsin Administration, members are instead applying their membership dues money to offset the tremendous increase in cost sharing now bestowed upon them by Governor Walker and the GOP Majority.

Union members clearly are not happy with the attacks brought onto them by Governor Walker and the Wisconsin GOP along with the financial backing of major corporations and wealthy private donors, but they are feeling they have no choice. This is very unfortunate that those union members who make that decision to stop their membership in their union are essentially giving up with no fight. With Governor's like Scott Walker and the present GOP Majority in the Wisconsin Legislature, the present situation will only worsen for public workers and soon private union workers in Wisconsin unless Union membership remains strong in order to provide the numbers, both in membership and financially, to stand up to these anti-worker politicians and affect change at the ballot box.

Wisconsin Workers need to stay strong and remain as a "Union" and this can simply be done with just the value of 10 gallons of gas, per month, to provide the fuel (members and money) to stand up against these anti-worker politicians and corporations and wealthy campaign donors to the GOP.

There IS NEVER a good time to GIVE UP, ROLL OVER and let politicians TAKE AWAYyour voice in the workplace and to collectively bargain with your employer, whether it be a public employer or private employer.

Lets not let Union Merger's become the savior, SAVE YOUR UNION and YOUR VOICE in the workplace and maintain your union membership or reinstate your union membership today.

On November 6th, make your voice heard loud and clear that you want pro-worker politicians and cast the right vote!

Teachers unions talk merger after membership drops 30 percent

GM and Chrysler Rebut Romney Auto Bailout Claims

Source: Milwaukee Area Labor Council

By Seema Mehta
October 30, 2012, 5:52 p.m.

TAMPA, Fla. — As Mitt Romney released more misleading claims about President Obama and the auto bailout on Tuesday, officials at GM and Chrysler weighed in and said the statements put forward by Romney about job losses and the offshoring of jobs were false — an unusual move for corporations, which tend to avoid entering the fray of partisan politics.

Romney released a new radio ad in Ohio that continued to imply that Chrysler, the parent company of Jeep, had outsourced production to China, and in a new accusation, claimed that GM was moving 15,000 American jobs to China. Earlier, Romney released a television ad that implied Jeep production was being moved to China. A GM spokesman defended the company and lashed out at Romney.

We've clearly entered some parallel universe during these last few days,” spokesman Greg Martin told the Detroit Free Press. “No amount of campaign politics at its cynical worst will diminish our record of creating jobs in the U.S. and repatriating profits back to this country.” GM did cut 15,000 jobs, but that occurred before the 2009 government bailout, and the company has added jobs since.

The head of Chrysler, meanwhile, fought back against the implication that the bailout and restructuring overseen by Obama led the company to outsource production to China. The company said it was indeed ramping up Jeep production in China, but for the Chinese market, and has not moved American production out the nation.

“I feel obliged to unambiguously restate our position: Jeep production will not be moved from the United States to China,” Chrysler Chief Executive Sergio Marchionne emailed employees, noting that American productions of Jeeps had tripled since 2009, and that the company was expanding operations in the United States. “Jeep is one of our truly global brands with uniquely American roots. This will never change. So much so that we committed that the iconic Wrangler nameplate, currently produced in our Toledo, Ohio, plant, will never see full production outside the United States.”

A request for comment from the Romney campaign was not answered Tuesday evening.

The GOP nominee has previously faced challenges presented by his opposition to the auto bailouts, which many in Ohio credit with saving the industry.


"NEW" Secretary of DOC Introduces Himself

From:    Wall, Edward F - DOC
Sent:      Tuesday, October 30, 2012 3:52 PM
To:         Wall, Edward F - DOC
Subject: Greetings

Good Afternoon Everyone,

I'm sure some of you are wondering “who is the new guy”? So here's the short version.......

I'm originally from Connecticut, where I was born and raised. I was a police officer in Meriden, CT. for just under 4 years before going to New Hampshire as a State Trooper for just over 10 years. My wife is from Wisconsin (Madison) and we moved here in 1999 when I was appointed as a Special Agent with DOJ.

I was promoted to Special Agent In Charge of the Investigative Services Bureau  in 2005 and in 2009 Governor Jim Doyle appointed me as the Administrator of Wisconsin Emergency Management based on my work in Homeland Security at DOJ. In 2010, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen asked me to return to DOJ, where I was named the Administrator of the Division of Criminal Investigation.  I've been a cop for 27 years.

I've been married for 23 years to my wife Debi and we have three children, Caitlin, Emily and Ryan. Just to be clear, I'm not a politician and have never given a dime to politicians. To his credit, Governor Walker never asked about my political or philosophical beliefs, he only asked me to do the best job I could in leading the DOC. With your help, that’s what we’ll try to do.

My leadership philosophy is simple, I've always just tried to do the right thing, for the right reason at the right time. I think if you talk to people I've worked with, they’ll tell you I'm fair, honest, direct to the point, care about people and I don't judge others based on gossip, but rather on their actions. In public safety work, we all will make mistakes because our work is so fluid. Those mistakes should be learning opportunities when possible and not necessarily career definitions.

My intention is to get to all of our institutions to visit with staff as quickly as the schedule will allow. You'll find I'm in the field a lot and prone to stopping by if I'm in the neighborhood. Not to catch anyone by surprise, but just to stay in touch and get a chance to speak to people at all levels and shifts in our 24/7 organization.

I want to thank all of you that took the time to send notes welcoming me to DOC. If you're in the area, please stop by the Central Office cafeteria on Friday, November 2nd from 8:30am to 9:45am for a snack and to say hello. Or if you happen to be around another time and can spare a moment to stop by the office, I’d be grateful for your time.  Thanks for all you do for our state and your patience while schooling up the new guy. Stay safe.


Edward F. Wall
Wisconsin Department of Corrections
Office: 608-240-XXXX
Cell: 608-219-XXXX
CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: This electronic mail transmission and any accompanying documents contain information belonging to the sender which may be confidential and legally privileged. This information is only for the use of the individual or entity to whom this electronic mail transmission was intended. If you are not the intended recipient, any disclosure, copying, distribution, or action taken in reliance on the contents of the information contained in this transmission is strictly prohibited. If you have received this transmission in error, please immediately contact the sender and delete the message. Thank you

Union Members Hard at Work During Superstorm "Sandy"

It is known fact, while "Union Members" have lost their homes or suffered massive damage to their property in the wake of the Superstorm Sandy, they still responded to their obligations of helping others facing devastation and unfortunately in some cases, loss of life. These Union Members come from the rank-and-file employees of Public and Private workers.

These same union members are on the job today doing what they can to restore power, water, food and at least some normalcy to people's lives who were in the path of Superstorm Sandy.

Union members from across this great nation and more specifically, AFSCME Members (Public Employees) at city, county and state levels send their prayers and thoughts to their AFSCME Sister's and Brother's impacted by Superstorm Sandy. These same "unionized" public employees stand ready to answer the call for assistance if the "ask" is made.

AFL-CIO Now - follow this link for the complete story...

Statement of AFSCME President Lee Saunders on Hurricane Sandy

Statement of AFSCME President Lee Saunders on Hurricane Sandy

Judge overturns law that lets governor block rules by DPI superintendent

Governor Walker "Constitutionally" Wrong again... One has to wonder how many more of his actions that he signed into law are "unconstitutionally" wrong, but simply have not been yet legally challenged.

Governor Walker has a history of conducting himself "legally wrong" and losing in the courts when his actions are challenged. This history stems back to his days as the County Executive for Milwaukee County and now continues as Governor of Wisconsin.

He still may face legal challenges with the ongoing JOHN DOE investigation that seems to have his past close advisors being criminally charged and in some cases convicted. A recent prosecution of a past close advisor to Governor Walker nearly had Governor Walker having to appear in a court of law, but suddenly the defendant chose to accept a plea agreement and thus Governor Walker was sparred from having to testify, "under oath" to any knowledge he has with regards to allegations from the JOHN DOE investigation. What is coming next?

Judge overturns law that lets governor block rules by DPI superintendent

President Obama to Appear in Green Bay on Thursday, November 1st

From: Trish Welte []
Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2012 8:18 AM
To: Marty Beil
Subject: FW: need help building....

Hi Marty-- wanted to let you know about the change in this event. If there is anything you can do to help build for the event, I know it is welcome. Thanks!

From: Tanya Bjork []
Sent: Tuesday, October 30, 2012 9:33 PM
To:; Trish Welte;;;;;
Subject: need help building....
Friends:  anything you can do to help us with this event is appreciated. 

Thursday, Nov. 1
President Barack Obama Green Bay Airport Tarmac Event
with Tammy Baldwin, Russ Feingold and Charles Woodson
Austin Straubel Airport, Enter Gate 4
Doors open 8:30am

Tickets for Tuesday's canceled event (including VIP tickets) will be honored.  Tickets also available on site.  

Tanya Bjork

Ready to vote? Here's what you need to know!

Election Day is less than one week away and your vote on November 6 will make a difference for working families.

Please look up the candidates in your area who will work for working families. Our labor endorsed candidates can be found here.

You do not need a photo ID to vote. If you are voting for the first time, you will have to bring something to your polling place that proves you are a Wisconsin resident. Here's a list of acceptable proof of residency documents, including a current utility bill, paycheck stub or bank statement.
You can register to vote in-person at your polling place on Election Day. To find your polling location and check your voter registration click here.

If you will not be available on November 6, there's still time to vote in-person absentee - but there's not much time left. Close of business on Friday, November 2, is the last day to vote in-person absentee at your local municipal clerk’s office.

As a union member, you know that having your voice heard makes a difference - don't forget to vote November 6. Report any problems at the polls to the Election Protection hotline at 1-866-OUR VOTE and visit the Government Accountability Board website for more information.

In Solidarity,

Phil Neuenfeldt, President
Stephanie Bloomingdale, Secretary-Treasurer

Wisconsin objects to Romney training manual urging incognito poll watchers

The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board is crying "Foul" with Mitt Romney's training materials for poll watchers.

The training document appears to instruct observers to hide their connection to the Romney campaign from the election inspectors at polling booths. While the observers should introduce themselves to the inspectors, they should "sign in as a 'concerned citizen' and obtain a name tag," according to the document, which bears the official insignia of the Romney campaign and is entitled "Volunteer Observer Training."

Wisconsin objects to Romney training manual urging incognito poll watchers

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

GOTV Schedule for the Milwaukee Area Labor Council Starting November 1st

There still is a tremendous amount of work to be done in the Milwaukee Area between now and Election Day. Any amount of time you can provide in helping us push our pro-worker candidates over the top on election day would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your help.

10 Reasons You Should Vote Early

This Friday, November 2nd is the LAST DAY you can vote early in Wisconsin. It is very important to vote. The AFL-CIO with concurrence from AFSCME Council 24 encourages EARLY VOTING. Follow the below link to understand why EARLY VOTING is more of a protection for you to vote.

10 Reasons You Should Vote Early

2013 WRS Contribution Rates for Participants

Employee Trust Funds (ETF) has announced the 2013 WRS Contribution rates. For most Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) employees and employers the rates will increase from 11.8% to 13.3% of payroll in 2013. In general, the total contribution rate is split equally between the employee and employer as shown in the chart below.

Employee Category
Total Rate
for 2013
for 2013
Elected Official/Executive/Judge
Protective with Social Security

The new rates will go into effect January 1, 2013 and will be reflected on employees’ January 10, 2013 paycheck.

For more information please see ETF’s website.  The link is listed below: